Solar Eclipse Mass Wedding Will See Hundreds of Couples Marry

Nearly 300 couples are planning to get married on the day of the solar eclipse on April 8.

They will be joining each other to say their vows before the sky goes completely dark in a mass wedding in Russellville, Arkansas.

Total Eclipse of the Heart, an annual music festival, is offering what it has called a “unique, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for Astro-loving partners” to get married and declare they love each other “to the moon and back”.

The wedding ceremony is “completely free”, with a wedding officiant provided along with decorations, flowers, a wedding cake and a bottle of sparkling fruit drink.

Those getting married just have to bring their own licenses—although the first 100 couples who registered had this reimbursed by the festival.

The sun rises over New York City during a solar eclipse on June 10, 2021. This year is set to see a total solar eclipse.


More than 280 couples are set to take part in this “celestial ceremony”, KATV News reported on Thursday.

One of these couples, Carlotta Cox and Matthew Holloway, from Knoxville, Tennessee, said they wanted to take advantage of the free wedding and experience “being in the path of totality”.

Cox said: “When totality hits, the cicadas come out, and then all the other animals, night animals, they’re starting to come out for a few minutes and then the temperature drops – I don’t know how to explain the feeling that it gives you.”

Although the actual wedding ceremony is being provided for free, brides, grooms and their friends and family who want to watch have to buy festival admission tickets.

Event organizer Rodney Williams told the Arkansas Times: “So it’s a totally free wedding and that’s why a lot of people signed up.

“But some of these couples have a lot of money. They can afford a traditional wedding, but it’s the uniqueness of the eclipse and it is a mass wedding and something that is only going to happen once in a lifetime.”

He said that orchestrating the event has meant he has heard multiple “soap opera” type stories, with one bride calling off the wedding because her fiancé “ran off with another woman” and then getting back together with him.

A total solar eclipse is set to cross North America, passing over Mexico, the United States and Canada on April 8.

Depending on the weather, the path of the eclipse should start in Mexico, enter the US through Texas and then travel through Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine.

This is when the moon blocks the face of the sun while passing between the sun and the Earth.

NASA has issued safety guidelines, which stress people watching the phenomenon with “safe solar viewing glasses (“eclipse glasses”) or a safe handheld solar viewer at all times”.

The advice stresses that eclipse glasses are not the same as regular sunglasses, which are not safe for viewing the sun.